Restriction fragment length polymorphism

  • Robert Bernatzky


In the 1960s, a group of enzymes were discovered in bacteria that could degrade incoming bacteriophage DNA and would ‘restrict’ their establishment in the cell [2,6]. These enzymes, known as restriction enzymes [19], have proved very valuable in modern manipulations of DNA. The first enzymes described (type I) require various cofactors and lack sequence specificity for their sites of cleavage. However, a second class (type II) were discovered that require only Mg2+ asa cofactor and have the distinct advantage that they recognize and cleave very specific sequences. Type II restriction enzymes are therefore capable of reducing complex DNA, such as plant nuclear DNA, into a population of fragments with discrete sizes. At least 475 restriction endonucleases have been described to date [24].


Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism Paper Towel Nick Translation Bromphenol Blue Restriction Fragment Length Poly 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Bernatzky
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant and Soil ScienceUniversity of MassachusettsAmherstUSA

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